FORMER AUBURN UNIVERSITY BASKETBALL PLAYER GARY GODFREY, AUBURN UNIVERSITY, FORMER UNIVERSITY OF ALABAMA FOOTBALL PLAYER KERRY GOODE, THE UNIVERSITY OF ALABAMA, THE ALS ASSOCIATION-ALABAMA CHAPTER, AND SPORTS MARKETING AGENCY MELT, TEAM UP TO PRODUCE THE INAUGURAL “THE KERRY & GARY CHALLENGE”, A VIRAL FUNDRAISING EVENT THE WEEK OF THE IRON BOWL
ATLANTA, GA – NOVEMBER 16, 2022 – MELT (www.meltatl.com), Former Auburn Basketball player, Gary Godfrey, and former Alabama Running Back, Kerry Goode, are two “rivals” teaming up to defeat something massive – ALS known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. In conjunction with the Atlanta-based, award-winning sports marketing agency, MELT, the ALS Association-Alabama Chapter, Auburn University, and The University of Alabama, the first “The Kerry & Gary Challenge” will be executed to raise funds for families exclusively in the State of Alabama facing ALS challenges.
Meet Kerry and Gary as they introduce themselves and explain why this is more than just football in this video.
The multi-platform fundraising event will kick off this week on social media and at “TheKerryandGaryChallenge.com.” Godfrey will be recognized at Auburn’s home basketball game on Friday night, and home football game on Saturday afternoon. Before Godfrey’s appearance at both games, a video from Auburn Men’s Basketball Coach Bruce Pearl will play on the arena and stadium jumbotrons, explaining the challenge and prompting Tiger fans to scan the QR codes on the screen to learn more and compete. Similarly, Kerry Goode will be recognized after a short video as Auburn and Alabama are warming up for the Iron Bowl at Bryant Denny Stadium. At that time, Crimson Tide fans can also scan a QR code to donate and compete. After the conclusion of the game, the Iron Bowl will still not be officially over, as a winner can still be decided in the Kerry and Gary Challenge, which will run until “Giving Tuesday” on November 29.
Both Auburn Tiger and Alabama Crimson Tide fans can compete in the challenge by donating on behalf of their team by visiting the website at, “TheKerryandGaryChallenge.com.” Fans will be able to join rival coaches, public figures, and politicians with ties to the State of Alabama in competition throughout the fundraiser. After donating, Tiger and Tide fans are then encouraged to post on their social media platforms, letting their friends and family know that they are “#imwithKerry” or “#imwithGary” in the “#KerryandGaryChallenge” as the former Tiger and Tide stars add fuel to the fire of the best rivalry in sports while educating and fueling the passion for the fight against ALS.
MELT, an Atlanta-based sports marketing agency is working alongside the aforementioned partners to produce this challenge. MELT Founder, Chairman, and CEO and Auburn University Alum, Vince Thompson found the entire challenge “inspiring” explaining that he “Covered Gary Godfrey as an Auburn sports information student assistant when we were at Auburn.” Thompson further expanded saying “To see the challenges Kerry and Gary’s families, and other ALS families are now facing, and the bravery and courage he wakes up with every day to make a difference in someone else’s life… that’s worth getting behind and I knew I wanted to help.” Godfrey was diagnosed with ALS in January of 2019, after noticing weakness in his arm while playing basketball. The former Auburn collegiate athlete could not get the ball to the rim and realized this was not an issue of being out of the game for over 20 years or being out of shape. After many tests, pricks, and MRIs in the Emory ALS clinic, Godfrey met with a highly regarded ALS clinician who delivered the news. Now, rather than “fighting” ALS, Godfrey has chosen to “live” with ALS, filling his days by making a difference in someone’s life.
In August 2015, Kerry Goode was diagnosed with ALS. After a lifetime of the former Alabama and NFL running back participating in two-a-day practice sessions as a player and a coach, Goode knew something was wrong when he could no longer pick up a box. Six months after the initial struggles, Goode was diagnosed. Goode had spent the year before his diagnosis helping his former Alabama teammate, Kevin Turner, raise money and awareness after Turner had been diagnosed with ALS. Little did he know, while he was helping Turner, he was also fighting for his own life. Goode now simply focuses on “keeping the bus moving” and when it runs out of gas, someone else needs to fill it up and continue the fight against ALS.
With the annual cost reaching $250,000 to care for an ALS patient, Godfrey and Good have decided to compete to see which fanbase can raise the most money for the ALS Association, with all proceeds raised by Auburn and Alabama set to help a neighbor in your town of Alabama, live with ALS. Information about Gary Godfrey and Kerry Goode, the challenge, and ways to donate can be found on “TheKerryandGaryChallenge.com.”